Monday, April 30, 2007

Paper towels and tears.

Crystal here.

Things are feeling pretty normal these days in the Jaida/Gracie/triple-cat-threat household. Jaida continues to show us that she's just another goof-ball puppy, with normal puppy ups and downs. Both her moms think that she's getting stronger and gaining endurance every day.

Jaida loves to spend her days outside poking around the yard, following her sister Gracie and her mums as they do their chores (for us, stacking wood; for Gracie, making sure the chickadees don't steal any food from the birdfeeder). She is definitely her happiest when she is filthy. We cannot keep her out of any recently dug pile of dirt, nor out of the swampy, mud-filled depressions in the far end of the yard. The mud-holes are particularly fun because the grass is oh-so-soft and easy to rip out by the sludgy mouthful. But more than anything, she loves to play "shadow" with Gracie.

Gracie is an adventurous gal, and likes to go ambling in the hay field behind our house. Of course, all of her amblings are now accompanied by a certain dangly-legged mudpuppy. Kim and I were busy gardening when we noticed that the girls were preoccupied with something in the field. They were taking turns rolling and snacking on something that was, without a doubt, dead and disgusting and beyond foul. So of course they were quite happy. Such happiness is not permissible in our house, so we called them back home and gave them a "sniff test" to determine whether or not they were going to be allowed back in the house. They passed (barely), and we thought that was the end of it.

Oh, boy, were we wrong. We paid dearly for our inattentiveness, with a lovely episode of DOUBLE DIARRHEA!!! Nothing like having two dogs who desperately need to go outside every hour on the hour, all night long, and all day, for two days. Whatever those fools got into, we'll never know, but I sure hope it was worth it. A diet of cooked rice, boiled chicken and cottage cheese now has them back on track, but Kim and I will be changing our investment portfolio to include copious shares in Bounty Paper Towels. Let's just say we didn't always wake up on time. *Sigh*

Part of the reason we missed a few "episodes" is because we are becoming increasingly sleep deprived. Jaida has an internal clock that you could set your watch by. And her internal clock says that at 5:20 a.m. she should be awake and barking/crying/howling. The TEARS, oh, the humanity. It's quite a scene. So, on the weekend, when her poor mums just want to sleep in ("pleeaaaase?")...well, we can forget about it. We tried an experiment on Saturday. We were going to break this habit by letting her bark her fool head off until she was exhausted, thereby realizing that barking/crying/howling are NOT productive means of being allowed out of bed.

For those of you dealing with a similar puppy problem, here is how it works:
10:00pm: put puppy to bed after a potty break. Tell puppy that her goose is cooked and snicker to yourself.
11:00pm-4:00am: let out diarrhea dogs every hour. (optional)
5:20am: the barking/crying/howling starts. Grin, knowingly: puppy will wear herself out in no time, and the battle will be won.
6:20am: close bedroom door to dampen the volume of barking/crying/howling.
7:20am: remove pillow from over your head so you can find the bottle of asprin on the bedside table, take 2 extra strength, then replace pillow.
8:00am: restate your resolve and reposition pile of pillows...the puppy cannot win this fight. Lie awake staring at the ceiling and dream about coffee while the puppy barks/cries/howls her fool head off.
8:20am: throw off the pillows, fling open the bedroom door, stomp downstairs and release the rotten brat smelly mudpuppy mutter mutter from her sleep area, make cups of strong coffee, and sulk over them while puppy romps and plays happily on the bed.
I'm pretty sure that Marty would have something to say about this. "Bad owners, bad!" comes to mind.


louthepou said...

Ah, com'on. Sleeping in on weekends is highly over-rated. 6:30 is late enough. Look at it this way. By the time the clock shows 9:00 am, the laundry's done, the dishes are dry and back in the cupboard, the floors are swept. Time to go gardening like crazy... Or fixing the old motorcycles, or welding the broken trailer, or...


marty said...

Bad could I even consider calling you bad owners after all you are doing for your dogs? You are on the right track by ignoring her bark, don't give up. You might want to invest in a pair of ear plugs for next weekend.